TV REVIEW Torchwood 2.09 "Something Borrowed"

Written by: Phil Ford

Directed by: Ashley Way

Rating:

The One Where: After being bitten by a shapeshifting alien, Gwen wakes up on the morning of her wedding pregnant with an alien egg… but decides to go ahead with the ceremony. Unfortunately, there’s an uninvited guest: a second shapeshifter, which plans to tear Gwen apart for the egg…

Verdict: One of the strongest episodes is followed by the weakest. Phil Ford’s Sarah Jane Adventures scripts were excellent, but this plays like an inferior version of Gavin and Stacey, with limp gags and thuddingly obvious characterisation. Nerys Hughes’s bitchy mother-in-law is painfully cliched, and Rhys’s friend Banana Boat sets my teeth on edge (speaking of which: so that’s what happened to Dick Emery’s vicar teeth…).

Second viewings reveal some strengths: Tosh being assertive, Rhys being a hero, and John Barrowman whipping out his enormous weapon. But something’s wrong when the out-and-out comedy episode has fewer funny lines than the one about suicide bombers…

Gaffes: During the first Hub scene, keep an eye on the screens in the background, and you’ll spot that 3D graphic of the nukes from “Sleeper” again.

It’s Wossisname! William Thomas (Eve’s dad) was in both classic Who (“Remembrance of the Daleks”) and the new series (“Boom Town”).

Nitpick: The black glove Owen wears to hide his injured hand is very Luke Skywalker, while his post-death fragility echoes Death Becomes Her.

Farewell Martha: When the creature’s disguised as Jack, it has a good minute to rip Gwen apart, but fannies about pretending to move in for a smooch. Why? And no-one seems bothered about the wedding DJ being horribly murdered…

Best Line:
Tosh: “Bananas make me vomit.”

Ian Berriman

Next Torchwood review: “From Out of the Rain”
Previous Torchwood review: “A Day in the Death”